Defence Minister visits CQ today and hears from representatives about Shoalwater Bay
Barnaby Joyce coming soon
Deadline for business case brought forward within 4 week
Federal Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry has confirmed that the Deputy Prime Minister and Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce will soon visit the region to discuss issues sounding the Shoalwater Bay military expansion, directly with farmers.
“I have had been talking to Barnaby Joyce on many occasions and I can confirm he will soon advise me of a date when he will visit Capricornia in the very near short term,” Ms Landry said.
The confirmation follows a visit to Rockhampton today by Federal Defence Minister Marise Payne at Ms Landry’s request.
“I am grateful that Minister Payne was able to come despite previously being away ill. The Minister was keen to hear first-hand some of the concerns from local people in the Marlborough district after I had informed her about their issue. The Minister held a good meeting with representatives of various stakeholders involved in the Shoalwater Bay process.
“The Minister announced that she has ordered the Department of Defence to now bring forward its business case analysis of the Shoalwater Bay expansion from later this year to within the next four weeks. This will provide a clearer picture, more clarity and certainty for landowners by identifying exactly what footprint defence intends to make in the area. Landowners had earlier been calling for a more defined timeframe.
“The Minister also strongly stated that she has told Defence that any impact on productive agricultural land should be kept as minimal as possible.”
Today’s meeting at Ms Landry’s office included: Ms Landry, Defence Minister Payne, Minister for Northern Australia, Ken O’Dowd MP, National Farmers Federation CEO Tony Mahar; CQ Agforce president John Baker and executive officer Sharon Howard, Rockhampton Mayor Margaret Strelow, Livingstone Mayor Bill Ludwig, graziers Lawson and Lynda Geddes; Allan Rea, Pip Rea, Trudy and Lachlan Mace as well as Danni McKenzie (Marlborough Motors and Marlborough Steering Committee Chair) and Keith Harris (President of the Qld Seafood Industry Association).